Three New Year’s FollowUps |

The January and February 2022 issues of Stereophile present follow-up reviews of three products: the darTZeel NHB-18NS Mk.2 preamplifier; the Sutherland Little Loco Mk.2 phono preamplifier; and the Mola Mola Tambaqui D / A processor.

Michael Fremer reviewed the original darTZeel NHB-18NS full-function preamplifier (it includes a moving coil phono stage) in the June 2006 issue of Stereophile. He bought the review sample and then replaced it with the NHB-18NS Mk.2, which he spoke about in June 2017.

Although I performed a full set of measurements on the original NHB-18NS, I never did it on the Mk.2. As darTZeel had sent in a new sample of the Mk.2 with the NHB-108 Model Two power amplifier that Jason Victor Serinus will review in the March 2022 issue, I took this opportunity to take these measurements. You can read what I found here.

In his Gramophone Dreams from December 2021, Herb Reichert got excited about the sound of the Mola Mola Tambaqui D / A processor, which was designed by Bruno Putzeys. “During my early listening days, the Mola Mola’s most notable sonic trait was brilliant, evenly lit clarity,” he wrote, adding, “Mola Mola’s Tambaqui didn’t whisper – he said aloud: “See! you thought it would! ‘ Herb concluded that with Mola Mola Tambaqui, “Putzeys seems to be tackling the fundamentals of digital conversion. ”

After writing his column, Herb emailed me suggesting that I measure the Tambaqui. My measurements revealed that the Mola Mola DAC delivers cutting-edge digital performance.

Brian Damkroger reviewed the Sutherland Little Loco Running Mode Phono Preamplifier in October 2019 and liked what he heard. “For my money, the Little Loco is the best way to spend $ 3,800 on an audio system with an analog source,” he concluded, warning that “you have to try a cartridge with the Little Loco to know if that will work. “(The Little Loco is best suited for use with low output, low internal impedance moving coil cartridges. The lower the output, the better; high impedance moving magnet cartridges do not work. are not recommended.)

One downside to using the original Little Loco is that it only has balanced XLR inputs. The Mk.2 has asymmetric inputs and Herb Reichert explained how it sounded in the January 2022 issue.

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